CHICAGO -- Jonathan Toews held his left arm behind his back for fear that he might graze the Clarence Campbell Trophy. Chicago's young captain didn't touch it, barely even looked at it, in fact. No need to, really.
Toews and the Blackhawks finished off their four-game sweep of the San Jose Sharks Sunday with a 4-2 victory at the incredibly loud United Center. As captain, Toews had to accept the trophy from NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly, but the one he wants is the silver chalice that NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman awards at the end of the Stanley Cup Final.
Then, and only then, will "Captain Serious" feel at ease, feel as though he and his teammates accomplished something great. For now, it's just good. Toews told NHL.com why after the on-ice theatrics were over:
Q: When did you start thinking, 'What will I do if that trophy is presented to me?'
Toews: Actually, I shouldn't even tell you this, but right before the game today I hadn't even thought of it and Sharpie (Patrick Sharp) is the one who came up to me and said, 'Do you have any plans for after the game?' I thought he meant for dinner, but he said, 'Are you picking it up? Are you touching it?' I was like, 'Oh.' I had thought about it a long time ago and I just think maybe to some people it looks like it's a lack of confidence to not touch it or it's a superstitious thing, but I think it shows more confidence. To us, it's a made-up trophy for winning the Western Conference. You know, big deal, it's not what we're after. We're here to win the Stanley Cup. That celebration with the fans and us getting these hats, that's enough for us. We're going to keep going. We're not satisfied yet.
Q: The resiliency you guys showed today coming back from 2-0 to win, does that define the character of this team?
Toews: Oh, absolutely. Just the killer instinct we had being down two goals, it's easy for any team to pack it in and say we have another three games to do this, but we wanted to do it here at home. We just wanted to do it. We wanted to win bad. We were ready to move on to the next round. You can't just come into a series, especially against a team like San Jose, and expect to sweep. We worked hard for it and we weren't going to let this game slip away.
Q: Bobby Hull told me just before the game that this Blackhawks team could help him win his second Stanley Cup. What does that mean to you when you think about those guys like Hull, Stan Mikita and Tony Esposito that are looking at you and saying, 'You can do this?'
Toews: Oh, it's great. They want it like they're still playing, like they're still in the dressing room. I'm sure a lot of us would feel the same way after our career. I mean, they're still part of this Blackhawks family, and that's what makes it special to wear this sweater. There is a history there, and you want to do it because your name and your number will be remembered by these fans for a long time. It's added motivation.
Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl